Saturday, July 7, 2012


Inspiration hits us from different places. And, for different reasons. As of late, with the way my head has been, I’ve felt less inspired to write than the old me had. Constant headaches and a short attention span keep me from thinking of much else besides the necessary daily functioning of things. But, I think some inspiration is finding its way back in. And, you want to know where it’s coming from? My Oldest. Yep. Kid inspired inspiration.

My girls came to spend the summer with me about two weeks ago. On Day One, my Oldest asked if I had any legal pads. I scrounged up the remains of one, though it was yellow, and she prefers white. She just started writing.

She filled up all the pages that were left and asked if I could read what she wrote. I was amazed. She had the beginnings of a novel with a Western flavor. It featured a strong, young female main character not much older than herself. Inspiration was tickling me.

Character drawings by Little One for the novel Oldest is working on.

We bought her a pack of white 8-1/2 x 11 legal style pads. She went into the reasoning of why she preferred those over spiral bound notebooks. No metal to dig into her or to catch on her if the spiral got caught on something. Nothing to get squished and keep the pages from turning. No looking at all those holes. The direction of flipping the paper and on and on. She really didn’t have to convince me. For less than four dollars, we can get her a six pack of her preferred note pads.

I know exactly how she feels to want to write on just the right kind of paper. I prefer a spiral bound myself; those half-sized ones with three sections and the thicker spiral wire so that it doesn’t squish and catch. And, I like the yellow legal style pads in the same size she prefers (vs. the actual longer legal size) for my character development and place description notes.

My notebooks. Smaller one has a few blogs written in my special chicken scratch.
Yellow legal pad has notes for novel #3. 

I’m like her, too, on writing a lot by hand. There’s just something in the way our brains work when we physically connect our pen to paper. She is also like me in that she prefers to write with blue pen (whereas Little One prefers black).

Oldest has almost forty pages chocked full of writing so far, not counting separate sheets with her notes and changes. She writes every moment she can. Writes when she first gets up. Brings her notepads to the waiting rooms of my appointments. Scratches things down on them while she’s riding in the car. And, most every night, she writes instead of reading when she climbs into bed.

A few days after she began writing, she asked me if it’s okay to write every other chapter from a different character’s point of view. Little One said she loved a book she recently read like that. I shared with them a few paragraphs from the first two chapters of my second novel, Identically Different. (It's still in the editing stages). It showed Oldest the differences between the ways the two identical twin sisters talk and think. Her eyes lit up. I had inspired her.

And, look. I’m writing. Even just a bit to start when I feel like I have more of a moment of clarity when my head pounds less. This is good. This is inspiration. And, I especially love where that inspiration comes from.

Where do you find inspiration?


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